Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Reflections on supervision (Helen Lee)

As the September graduation approaches, I look forward to seeing one of my graduate researchers get her degree, after persevering for nearly 15 years to finish her thesis.

Her case is unusual, as she had three periods of maternity leave and other long breaks for a range of reasons. But she was determined to finish, and I’m so proud of her!

It leads me to reflect on my experiences as a supervisor since she was one of my earliest graduate research students.

I’ve now supervised more than 50 postgrads and it’s one of my favourite roles as an academic. The close intellectual relationship that develops between supervisors and graduate researchers is always mutually beneficial and in some cases even leads to enduring friendships.

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

My year as President of the LIMS Fellows Society (Rohan Lowe)

Image courtesy of Kha Phan (LIMS Fellows Society)
An interesting thing happened to me in the winter of 2016. Our institutional postdoc society decided it was time to get organised and elect a president.

A distinct lack of volunteers was apparent. I was nominated by another member and, emboldened by their vote of confidence, I agreed I would stand for president.

No other nominations were made, and I quickly became the president of the LIMS Fellows Society.

I’m not a career politician. I may have enjoyed watching House of Cards and loved a good political power move on Survivor, but my election to president of the LIMS Fellows was not in my career plan.

I don’t like to turn down opportunities, however, so this blog post is about my year as president of the LIMS Fellows Society.

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Creating a website for your research (Jane Kelley)

Liver fluke is endemic in Australian dairy cattle and has detrimental impacts on milk production, weight gain and fertility.

Our aim is to develop techniques to identify the true extent of the issues associated with liver fluke infections within Victorian dairy herds, with the aim of improving the profitability through the implementation of a liver fluke control program.

A key component of our grant is communication with our stakeholders to create awareness, provide access to information, build understanding within the community, provide opportunities where stakeholders can provide feedback, and make research findings available.

We decided our primary point of contact would be a website, as it would be accessible to both our primary (dairy farmers), and secondary audiences (service providers, dairy organisations, research community) and serve as repository for all project related information.

Tuesday, 5 September 2017

How I became Career Ready (Nicholas Anthony)

There comes a stage where every graduate researcher comes to the earth-shattering realisation that their La Trobe research will not last forever and that, one day in the not too distant future, they will need to find a job.

This shouldn’t come as a surprise. I mean, you do only sign up for three years but, somehow, it does.

Following this shouldn't-be-so-shocking realisation, the thoughts start to flood in:

Photo by Mounzer Awad on Unsplash
What do I want to do?
Where do I want to do it?
How does one actually get a job?
Why hasn’t anyone prepared me for this?!

Unfortunately, at this stage, you’re well and truly an adult and it’s your job to prepare yourself.

Fortunately, however, La Trobe knows we need a little help, and has a service known as “Career Ready”.

Now, I know that a name like that sounds like standard university spin targeted at undergrads to look good on posters, and put bums on seats. In reality, though, it’s not spin, and it's for researchers, too!

Even better, as the name suggests, it is a service to get you career ready!

Why am I telling you about all of this? Because I went through the all of the above and - SPOILER ALERT - I went to a Career Ready consultation and loved it!